Saturday, July 17, 2010

17 June 2010 Minack Theatre, Penzance and St Ives Cornwall

Wild Pheasant on the lawn at breakfast at Little Australia B&B

Lyn at Breakfast

Minack Theatre near Porthcurno, Cornwall

Minack Theatre

Minack Theatre

Minack Theatre

Minack Theatre

Minack Theatre - Mick standing on Yonder Balcony waiting to find out...."what light through yonder window breaks..."

Minack Theatre

Lands End, Cornwall

The first and last house at Land's End

Entrance and paystation to Land's End

Piper at Land's End

Castle on St Michael's Mount the home of the St Aubyn's family in Penzance, Cornwall

Castle on St Michael's Mount the home of the St Aubyn's family in Penzance, Cornwall

Awoke to an overcast morning with a cool breeze but as the day progressed it turned to bright sunshine with the odd patch of cloud.

We had a very nice English breakfast in the sunroom (conservatory) overlooking a beautiful wood and saw a Jay, two Pheasants, some Blue Tits and a pair of Chaffinches feeding on the lawn just outside the window.

We then headed off to the Minack Theatre which is on the coast about 30 miles from Gweek (our B&B) and 1 mile south of Porthcurno on the south west tip of Cornwall.

On the journey we passed through Helston and Penzance on the A394 and A30 respectively. The roads as usual were smooth, although windy in places and it didn’t narrow to a single lane until we were close to destination. That's when Lyn starts to get panicky.

The Minack Theatre is an open air theatre, developed over many years and is a unique construction built almost on a cliff face. It was the brainchild of Rowena Cade who also did a lot of the building work over many years and is used for staging performances of many famous productions, see pics.

We were both amazed with the construction and location and had never seen anything like it. It is referred to as Cornwall’s theatre under the stars.

We tried nearly all the seating positions, all of which have a great view of the stage due to the steep incline and took heaps of photos. The view out to sea and along the coast was spectacular and Mick saw some seals feeding in the water below.

We then had a coffee and a did a circuit or two around the gift shop before we headed off to Lands End which was just a few miles down the road.

When we arrived we were surprised to find hundreds of people there and their cars. We all had to pay £4 parking. It was a very commercial enterprise which spoilt it somewhat however most people wanted to get a photograph of themselves at Land’s end and were prepared to pay for it.

We didn’t stretch to paying £12 for a professional photographer to take out picture in front of the Lands End sign with our own customized pointer, so we took our own pics. Mick did notice that the official photographer was still using a 35mm camera so you had to wait for 2-3 weeks for your photograph to arrive in the mail.

Lyn saw her first Scotsman playing the bagpipes whilst we were there or he could have been Cornish, who knows. He looked very smart in his tartan outfit and he could really belt out a tune. She also experienced a traditional Cornish Pasty, which was very enjoyable but no doubt fattening with all that pastry around it. It seemed to contain some meat but mostly vegetables.

Next stop Penzance, a coastal town on the edge of Mount's Bay. Mount's Bay refers to St Michael’s Mount on top of which is a very large castle which is the home of the St Aubyn's family. Very impressive from whichever way we viewed it.

As usual parking was at a premium in Penzance so we didn’t stay for long, but what we did see of it we rather liked.

We then decided to visit St Ives another lovely coastal town about 10 miles north of Penzance on the northern side of the peninsular but when we got there we found that the parking was even worse with virtually no inner town parking at all. We did a quick run through the town before stopping at a Tesco on the outskirts of the town to buy something for tea. We didn’t feel like a big meal tonight after the pasty, so settled on a sandwich, yogurt and fruit.

After having a very busy day we stuck TR12 6BG into the GPS and headed home to our very comfortable B&B.

Back to the perfect sunny days we had been experiencing hopefully.

We head off to London tomorrow.

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